Sleep Deprivation and Being Enough
A few months ago I wondered if I’d ever sleep again - maybe this would be the kid who went off college still not sleeping through the night. And even though she’s my fourth baby, I found myself questioning everything I did. Was I not doing enough? Did I need to be better? How can I “sleep train” when I’m just so tired, all day long, with my attention split between so many little humans? I had never been so exhausted in all my life - not as a single mom, not with any of my other three children combined. This poor girl was colicky, and refused to be set down or held by anyone except me. I would've been grateful for even a two hour stretch of sleep.
But here we are, 5 months later, and this sweet girl is figuring things out. She sleeps all night in her crib and is starting to nap better. It happened different for all my kids, but they all got there, in their own time, in their own way. And without fail, I miss the neediness and cuddles. I miss the way she curled into my body and nursed in the middle of the night, with both of us half asleep. There’s something special about those moments, in the middle of the night, when the rest of the house is silent and you're just tending to your baby’s needs. That even in the state of being sleep-deprived, shower-deprived, sanity-deprived… we are enough to fill our baby’s every needs.
And so if you’re still there in the sleeplessness, know that you’re enough. That your snuggles and your love and your sleep deprived attempts are all exactly what they’re meant to be. You don’t need another book or technique. Your baby WILL sleep, and until then, give yourself lots of grace.